Highlights and Disappointments from Spring and Summer 2019

Highlight: The burger at P.J.’s Tavern in Kirkwood. Perfectly juicy with a nice slice of cheddar.

Highlight: My wife wanted Cunetto’s for her birthday. A spot we hadn’t visited since the 90s. Food was perfect and the service superb.

Disappointment: The cornbread I had at Grace Meat + 3 was not good. And they charge 2.50 for a 2″ X 2” chunk! They served it right on the tray—no plate. Not even a napkin. That’s lazy. Also, they should be embarrassed to charge 8.00 for a smallish and not very good banana pudding.

Highlight: Dinger’s Donuts at Busch Stadium. I tried ‘em at a Cardinals event for bloggers in 2016 and liked ‘em. The ones I had last week were even better: fresh and warm and delicious.

Highlight: The shrimp at the gulf coast. We went to a shrimp boil at our friends Alan and Donna’s place at Orange Beach, Alabama in April. Amazingly good! I had shrimp and grits at Felix’s Fish Camp in Mobile with friends Joe and Shirley and those shrimp were also several notches better than we get in St. Louis.

Disappointment: Speaking of shrimp, the ones we were served at Rosalita’s in Des Peres had that “previously cooked” flavor and texture. Were they leftovers? Don’t know, but they left much to be desired. Also the chicken breast was rubbery.

Highlight: The cinnamon roll at the IKEA snack bar right past the checkout area. Warm, moist with the right amount of cinnamon and icing. And just a buck!

Disappointment: Finally tried the Swedish meatballs at IKEA. Meh.

Highlight: Crazy Bowls and Wraps. Hadn’t been in years. Stopped in on a whim and got a pretty good meal.

Disappointment: The Chicken Tortilla Soup at Applebee’s in Bemidji, Minnesota. Lukewarm and horrible. I know, I know. We should’ve known better.

Highlight: Breakfast at Snooze in Westminster, Colorado. It’s a chain like First Watch that offers breakfast and lunch. They’re about to open their first KC store. Hope they make it to STL. Food and service were impressive.

Highlight: Pulled pork and ribs on July 4th from Dalie’s Smokehouse.

Highlight: Clam Chowder at 801 Fish in Clayton. Extraordinary! (Finally tried the place during Clayton Restaurant Week.)

More highlights than disappointments so, on balance, not a bad a few months!



In Case You Missed It…

The Midwestern Meat and Drink at 900 Spruce, Downtown STL, offers a Crispy Pig Head for $45. Must order 48 hours in advance.

There’s a joint opening soon on Cherokee that will offer all you can drink booze (not high end stuff of course) for $10/hour, according to an item recently shared on a local food media site. Don’t know all the details but sounds like a mess in the making.

Sad note for all of us named Dave or David: The Jim’n’Nick’s BBQ chain out of Birmingham no longer lists the Hamburger Dave as their featured burger. They now list 3 or 4 different burgers. I’m a J’n’N fan.

The UCP Wing Ding happens Tuesday, August 27 at Queeny Park. It’s a great opportunity to eat a ton of wings for a great cause. Click HERE for info. (I’ll be a judge for the event. Can’t hardly wait!)

The Post-Dispatch restaurant review last week was particularly negative. But the reviewer thought enough of the place to post a review, so there’s a bit of validation. (Sometimes reviewers don’t even bother, figuring a bad restaurant will bite the dust soon enough anyway.) The restaurant can process the criticisms and, if they think they’re valid, act on them. At the very least, P-D readers are now aware of the restaurant and its location.

—David Craig


True Story

A friend and his wife went to dinner on a recent weekend evening to celebrate their anniversary. The food, wine and service at this suburban St. Louis County nice-but-casual restaurant were great. They paid with a card they use only occasionally.

A few hours later they received an alert from the card company about a purchase amounting to several hundred dollars from a national specialty goods retail chain. Which my friend nor his wife did not make.

My friend’s wife suggested he call the restaurant. He called Monday and mentioned what had happened and made clear he was not accusing anybody of anything. He just thought it was something he should mention to the people running the place. The person who answered said she would have the manager call him back.

On Tuesday, the manager did call back and immediately went on the defensive, telling my friend that all his people were top notch citizens and nothing like this had ever happened at his place. My friend repeated that he was not accusing anybody of anything, that he (my friend) just thought that he (the manager) might want to know about what had happened. Again, the manager seemed offended that my friend would offer this information. When the call ended, my friend was just a bit upset at the manager’s attitude.

My friend told me that he will not be returning to the restaurant.